sea snake identification requested

by RitaGuz, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 15:24 (166 days ago)

I've been trying to find out the name of the snake I saw while snorkeling at Coral Beach. It was swimming below me, from under one rock to under another. About 3" in diameter, with black and narrow dark orange stripes. I couldn't see how long it was, since it was in the process of moving from one hidden spot to another. It took several seconds to see the tail, which did narrow down. Anyone know what it was? Thanks if you do! I'm new to snorkeling, and curious about all the fun creatures I have seen.

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sea snake identification requested

by Talley Ho @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 15:35 (166 days ago) @ RitaGuz

sea snake identification requested

by sactomary, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 17:47 (166 days ago) @ Talley Ho

saw one too at Barra. It had washed ashore and was barely alive. Is this common to see these snakes?

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sea snake identification requested

by Talley Ho @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 19:35 (165 days ago) @ sactomary

Seasonally, yes.

sea snake / EEL's

by midalake @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 19:31 (165 days ago) @ RitaGuz

I've been trying to find out the name of the snake I saw while snorkeling at Coral Beach. It was swimming below me, from under one rock to under another. About 3" in diameter, with black and narrow dark orange stripes. I couldn't see how long it was, since it was in the process of moving from one hidden spot to another. It took several seconds to see the tail, which did narrow down. Anyone know what it was? Thanks if you do! I'm new to snorkeling, and curious about all the fun creatures I have seen.


As a long time visitor, fisher, and diver to the area are you sure this was a snake? EEl's are proflic here and come in many shapes and sizes. True Sea Snakes spend very little time under water. Also I have seen very few sea snakes here.

D

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sea snake / EEL's

by juanrojo @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 20:40 (165 days ago) @ midalake

One other possibility given the girth mentioned is a Zebra Moray Eel.

The snake eel tail appears like it could have bee sharpened like a pencil, almost a perfect cone.

Moray eel tails are pinched flat from the sides but taper down from top to bottom.

I have very often seen the spotted snake eels Midalake mentions as they pursue small crustaceans in and sometimes out of the water in the fairly firm hard sand of La Ropa's wash zone.


On one instance in particular I saw an eel almost totally disappear right down into the hard sand of the wash zone, sometimes partially submerged, sometimes with the last two inches still exposed above water. I was already familiar with the two very different eel tail types mentioned above.


Logic and behavior suggested Snake Eel but it was a pinched flat while tapering Moray eel tail that disappeared right before my eyes and camera. This story is a bit off topic but the point of my story, (tale), is that if a moray eel can suck itself right out of view in the relatively hard sand of the wash zone then one could just as easily be lurking under any sand surface, any time.

A nice fat Zebra Moray Eel is another good guess depending on the stripe direction you recall.

https://www.mexican-fish.com/zebra-moray/

--
Please be happy always

sea snake / EEL's

by HolyMole, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 21:28 (165 days ago) @ juanrojo

One other possibility given the girth mentioned is a Zebra Moray Eel.

The snake eel tail appears like it could have bee sharpened like a pencil, almost a perfect cone.

Moray eel tails are pinched flat from the sides but taper down from top to bottom.

I have very often seen the spotted snake eels Midalake mentions as they pursue small crustaceans in and sometimes out of the water in the fairly firm hard sand of La Ropa's wash zone.


On one instance in particular I saw an eel almost totally disappear right down into the hard sand of the wash zone, sometimes partially submerged, sometimes with the last two inches still exposed above water. I was already familiar with the two very different eel tail types mentioned above.


Logic and behavior suggested Snake Eel but it was a pinched flat while tapering Moray eel tail that disappeared right before my eyes and camera. This story is a bit off topic but the point of my story, (tale), is that if a moray eel can suck itself right out of view in the relatively hard sand of the wash zone then one could just as easily be lurking under any sand surface, any time.

A nice fat Zebra Moray Eel is another good guess depending on the stripe direction you recall.

https://www.mexican-fish.com/zebra-moray/

Several times over the years, snake/eel-like critters have come ashore while I walked along Playa La Ropa. Without fail, the locals insisted they were sea snakes, when even a non-expert like myself could see they were eels, not snakes.

sea snake / EEL's

by sactomary, Saturday, February 09, 2019, 13:47 (164 days ago) @ HolyMole

The snake I saw at Barra was definitely a sea snake. It was identical to the picture posted. It had a rounded tail end with spots. I read they don't live out of water and it was struggling. No doubt in my mind of the identification.